Chipo McNichols, Psy.D., is a 2016 graduate of the PsyD Program in Clinical Psychology at Antioch University, Seattle

Dissertation Committee

Jude Bergkamp, PsyD, Committee Chair

William Heusler, PsyD, Committee Member

Aruna Gore, PhD, Committee Member

Chuck Geddes, PhD, Committee Member


Complex trauma, intergenerational trauma, Aboriginal children and youth, Complex Care and Intervention, Participatory Action Research, indigenous research, Canadian mental health disparities, cultural adaptations, Aboriginal perspectives on healing

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Publication Date



Despite living in a country with a world renowned healthcare system, Canadian Aboriginal children, youth and their families, consistently have poorer access to healthcare as well as higher mortality and morbidity rates, in comparison to non-Aboriginal Canadians (Tang & Browne, 2008). Among factors including their history of residential school and intergenerational trauma, the lack of a culturally specific treatment intervention for complex trauma, is identified as a key factor in maintaining this health disparity. This study used participatory action research within an identified Aboriginal community, to develop a culturally adapted complex trauma intervention model. This was based on an existing model that has been used with primarily non-Aboriginal children living in the foster care system. The result was an adapted model an intervention model that kept culture at the core of the treatment program. The model was adapted using both a Western neurodevelopmental theory and an indigenous framework based on local traditional knowledge. The adapted model will be applied in the community with the potential for further adaptations, and may be generalised for use with other Aboriginal communities. The electronic version of this dissertation is at AURA Antioch University Repository and Archive, and OhioLink ETD Center,


Chipo McNichols, 2016

ORCID Scholar# 0000-0003-2090-9265